Chapter 1: Introduction
“Success doesn’t happen overnight.” This sentence has been a timeless proverb that reminds us that life has no shortcuts. It’s no secret that to achieve success in anything, you need to put in the hard work. This is especially true in the field of entrepreneurship. A common misconception of entrepreneur wannabes is that they think they can achieve the best results with little to no effort involved. They are those who are all talk, yet no action. Are you one of those people? If so, then let this training transform your thinking.
Whether you’re just starting out or already one, becoming a successful entrepreneur is no easy feat. You need to have a solid foundation and possess the key traits of today’s business magnates. This course will help you do just that. Chapter 1 focuses on the reasons why you should become an entrepreneur. In Chapter 2, you will learn the important rules when you’re starting out. Lastly, Chapter 3 will give practical advice to become a successful entrepreneur.
Entrepreneurship is not an extraordinary occupation. According to a survey by MARKINBLOG in 2020, there are about 582 million entrepreneurs in the world. What are the latest statistics of today’s entrepreneurial world? Here are a few:
- There were 774,725 businesses less than a year old in the 1st quarter of 2019
- In 2019, there were 252 million female entrepreneurs worldwide
- 78% of small businesses in the US are considered profitable
- More than 50% of new businesses in the past decade are minority-owned
- 27% want to start their own business because they are dissatisfied with corporate America
- 7% of the world’s richest people are self-made
- 60% of start-up owners are between the ages of 40 and 60
- More than 50% of new businesses fail in the first four years
- Only 25% of startups reach 15 years or more
With these pieces of information, we can conclude that entrepreneurship, though involves certain risks, is still a popular work option today. What about you? Do you want to become an entrepreneur? If so, starting a business will provide a continual flow of income and open doors of endless opportunities.
Why do thousands and thousands of people become an entrepreneur every day? Here are the top 6 reasons why you and a lot of people want to start their own business:
1. You Can’t Handle a 9-to-5 Job
If you’re an aspiring entrepreneur, you may find that working traditional 9 to 5 jobs doesn’t seem to be rewarding at all. Attending endless group meetings, cramming for unrealistic deadlines, and finishing unfulfilling tasks on a weekly basis can lead you to be bored and lethargic, making you feel as if you’re stuck in an endless loop. However, an entrepreneurship lifestyle gives you so much more flexibility than 8-hour workdays and 2 weeks of vacation time that corporate life permits.
2. You’re The Boss
If you’ve been working in the corporate world for most of your career, then chances are, you might be getting tired of having someone bossing you around all the time. This can also mean that you suffer the consequences for their careless decisions. However, becoming an entrepreneur change all of that. This time, you’re the boss. You’re the one calling the shots. Although being the sole person who holds accountability, being your own boss gives you the freedom and flexibility to determine what’s best for your business.
3. You Can Focus On Your Passion
A lot of times, we’ve set aside our passion in order to earn a decent living in this vast corporate world. This, however, has a big impact on our work satisfaction, leaving us feeling sad and unfulfilled in our current jobs. However, when you become an entrepreneur, you can have the chance to live your dream that you never thought you could! When you pursue your passion and turn it into a profitable business, you’ll enjoy, not only having a steady flow of income, but also the satisfaction of knowing that you’re doing what you love the most every day.
4. You Can Build A Legacy
Becoming an entrepreneur is not always about the present. As the forerunner, you want to establish a legacy for the future generations to come. Whether it’s for your children, your race, or your minority, you’re making sure that what you’ve built now will be preserved and taken care of. Having this “legacy” mindset serves as a major driving force to turn your business into something that will last long-term.
5. You Want To Change The World
Successful entrepreneurs all unite in one common goal: they want to change the world. Today’s business moguls were once regular people who wanted to make a difference in life. You’re likely the same. Starting a business with the goal of solving a major problem, using technology to make things much easier, or providing more work opportunities for people is your way of saying, “I want to make the world a better place.”
6. You Like Taking Risks
Building a successful business involves a lot of risks, but it doesn’t matter, because you enjoy it! Entrepreneurs are bold and adventurous. They live for the thrill of brainstorming new ideas and gambling their chances of succeeding. You might be someone who enjoys getting goosebumps from the excitement of making something happen. If so, this means that you’re willing to take on high-stake projects because you’re confident enough to execute them. Whether these ventures would turn to multi-million-dollar businesses or become complete flops, you’re satisfied knowing that you took a chance instead of not trying at all.
If you share these same reasons, then no doubt you’re an entrepreneur by heart. Rather than doing what society expects you to do, follow your great idea and make a difference. Be brave and take that leap of faith to the entrepreneur world. But the real question now is: How do you start being an entrepreneur? Proceed to Chapter 2 to find out.
Chapter 2: How to Get Started As An Entrepreneur
So, you’ve finally done it. You’ve mustered courage, and now on square one of the entrepreneurs’ lives. Yet, you might be thinking about how to start things off on the right foot. Don’t worry! Here are 10 important rules that you should follow as an aspiring entrepreneur:
Rule #1. Know What You Love
First things first: You need to know what you’re most passionate about. If you start a business that you know you won’t enjoy in the long haul, you’re basically setting yourself up for failure. Remember that entrepreneurship demands hard work, so you want to make sure that you’re starting something you’ll actually want to be doing every day.
Rule #2. Believe In Yourself
Whatever you feed in your mind can either lift you up or tear you down. Remove that negativity and inject confidence and positivity. Be your own empowerment coach. Believe in yourself and your big idea. After all, if you don’t believe in yourself—no one will.
Rule #3. Do Your Research
Next step is to analyze your market. Start by looking at other companies within your niche. What products and services do they offer? What makes them stand out? What do they do poorly? Conducting market research helps you to find what other areas can you work on, so you can have an edge against your potential competitors.
Rule #4. Understand Your Target Market
Now that you’re sure what business to establish, the next thing you need to consider is your audience. Who are you selling to? What are their wants and needs? How can you provide a solution to their problem? What can move them to engage with your business? Understanding your ideal customer profile will enable you to provide a service that can cater to their needs.
Rule #5. Set Goals
Your business should have direction. This is where goals take place. Create goals that are SMART—Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-sensitive. Having clear, well-defined goals motivate you to keep moving on the right track.
Rule #6. Create a Business Plan
After you’ve created your goals, you need to lay them out in a written document. You do this using a business plan. A business plan should clearly define your goals, your milestones, and timeframes for each objective. It’s like a map that provides directions for the future, leading you to what your business projection should be.
Rule #7. Start Slow
In this turbo-charged and fast-paced environment, people are pushed to perform faster and are expected to achieve success instantly. However, you might adopt that mindset when it comes to your business, adrenaline filled as you start on day one. Yet, to attain true success, you need to hold back and start slow. This means giving ample time for you to be physically, mentally, emotionally, and financially prepared. It also means taking into consideration your limits.
Taking things slowly gives you time to plan and organize. Instead of having a ‘got to-go-now’ attitude, you set aside time to research information, ask for advice, and create a step-by-step process in reaching a specific goal. Starting slowly also allows you to become more patient, helping you to avoid the pitfalls of rushing.
Rule #8. Be Consistent
There’s no such thing as instant success. Consistency is the true ticket to any victory. To be consistent means being fully dedicated to accomplishing your goals. It requires commitment, having a sustained effort of action over the long-term. Being consistent helps you to stay engaged without distraction, completely locked in on your objectives.
Rule #9. Invest In The Best
As an entrepreneur, your job is to satisfy customers by providing the best, premium services in your market. However, you’ll only be able to do that if you invest in the right equipment. From the latest machines to professional software, make sure that you allocate a budget for these areas.
Top-notch equipment provides more efficiency and consistency, allowing your business to stay ahead. When you make your customers feel that they’ve received exceptional service, they’ll surely patronize your business, which, in return, provides more profit and market visibility.
Rule #10. Join a Community
Let’s face it, you can’t know everything. You need to hear thoughts from other people, a second opinion if you will. Fortunately, there are a lot of communities, both online and offline, that are willing to support one another, for they unite with a common goal or idea. Why not engage with these people? Communities can be a real source of inspiration for you. Plus, you can get a deeper understanding of the ins and outs of the business you’re trying to establish.
Applying these rules provides a solid foundation as you embark on your journey as an entrepreneur. However, to become a successful entrepreneur, you need to know more than just fundamentals. In Chapter 3, we’ll provide the best tips, practices, and advice on how to become a successful entrepreneur.
Chapter 3: How to Become a Successful Entrepreneur
Successful entrepreneurs are those who possess vital qualities, apply the best practices, and develop integral traits. Here is a list of tips that you can implement to become a champion entrepreneur:
Know Your “Why”
Why are you doing this in the first place? Know your reasons and write them down. For example, if you’re looking to build a lasting legacy for the future generations to come, you’ll find yourself more motivated to accomplish it instead of reaching it just for self-interest. Meditating the reasons why you want to achieve something is one of the best ways to keep you on track.
Outsource Your Work
Let’s face it: You’re not a superhero. You can’t possibly do it all by yourself. Lighten your load by finding a helping hand, or even better, a set of hands. Delegate smaller, time-consuming tasks to freelancers.
Trust will play an important role when finding someone to delegate your tasks with. You need to identify which freelancers are considered trustworthy and are really capable of handling the job. One way to do this is by looking at their CV, analyzing their work history, and contacting their references. This will help you to decide whether they are worthy enough to take on a certain role.
Get a Career Coach
If you find yourself struggling to do the right steps, consider professional help. A career coach is a professional whose job is to empower individuals by offering practical assistance, helping you to make informed decisions toward your goals. Career coaches provide personalized and expert advice to your specific situation. They will help you to have realistic and well-defined goals. Having a career coach motivates you to dedicate time to focus on what’s important to you.
Be Aware of Your Urge to Quit
The urge to give up is always present. In fact, our desire to quit is sometimes unconscious. You must humbly acknowledge that the urge to quit is just one of the emotions that people go through. Being aware of these impulses calibrates your perspective, giving you a more realistic approach to how you can reach your goals.
A lot of negative thoughts will come to mind. Learn to have a more positive perspective in reaching your dreams. Learn to let go of negative threads of thought before they consume you. Staying affirmative keeps your eyes fixed on the prize.
Build a Professional Network
Networking isn’t just an exchange of business cards with different people. It’s about setting up long-term, mutually beneficial relationships with the people you connect with. Building your network creates a lot of opportunities to receive further support, knowledge, and advice on how to grow your business.
How can you build a professional network?
- Find the right people
- Create mutual benefits
- Make the first move
- Introduce others
Know Your Strengths and Weaknesses
As an entrepreneur, you should practice self-awareness. This means knowing your strengths and weaknesses. Developing full awareness helps you identify internal and external factors that can affect you and your business.
To give a personal assessment, you need to conduct a personal SWOT analysis. Here’s the breakdown of SWOT:
- Strengths – “What am I good at?”
- Weaknesses – “What areas do I need to improve?”
- Opportunities – “What possibilities are in store for me?”
- Threats – “What can potentially harm me from growing professionally?”
A SWOT analysis is beneficial as it serves your framework for career advancement. It recognizes core strengths, reverses the weaknesses, maximizes opportunities, and avoids threats. By reviewing your performances, you can identify what areas you should focus on.
Stop Being a Perfectionist
Perfection, in its literal form, is non-existent. As imperfect human beings, we make imperfect output. But though not having the absolute form of perfection, we can be perfect if we strive to be exceptional. Being exceptional at anything means that we strive to be outstanding in anything we do.
However, this isn’t something that can be achieved overnight. It requires time and patience. It also involves a lot of failures and setbacks. However, failing repeatedly can help you to learn from your mistakes, motivating you to be better each day. Charge every downfall to experience. When you constantly look for ways on how to improve each day, you can be exceptional in everything.
Find an Accountability Partner
In addition to being in a community, you still need someone to support you on a daily basis. Find an accountability partner, someone that you can be with along the way. It can be your spouse, a family member, or a friend that you can trust. Having an accountability partner doesn’t necessarily mean that you share the same goal. What matters is that you serve as a support system to one another, motivating each other to continue reaching success.
We all hit rock bottom sometimes. Feelings of tiredness or having hints of depression can really affect how we manage our business. This is why we need a form of stimulus that can reinforce our desire to keep on grinding. Find sources of inspiration from talks, podcasts, articles, biographies. Use others’ success to fuel your own. This will revitalize you, helping you to get back on track.
Make Wise Decisions
The decisions you make every day will ultimately determine your future. This is why you need to make wise decisions every day. To make the best decisions, you need to apply the 4D method.
The 4D method is:
- Delete (Drop). These are tasks that are extraneous and shouldn’t be of concern. You can throw these straight down the bin.
- These are types of tasks that you can hand over to people who know the role well. You can delegate tasks usually by outsourcing them to skilled workers, such as freelancers.
- These are tasks that aren’t in a hurry. If there’s something that can be postponed and have no major consequences, defer it.
- These are of top priority. These tasks should be done right away.
Allot Time to Reflect
Reflecting helps you review the effectiveness of your business. Peter Bregman, wrote a book called 18 Minutes, explaining how we can combat distractions and gain productivity. Why is it called 18 minutes?
- Morning (5 minutes). Start the day by thinking about what can be done to achieve success today. Then, take those things off your to-do list and schedule them into your calendar.
- A minute per work hour (8 minutes). As you go about your daily tasks, you need to refocus yourself. Set an alarm every hour. Every time the alarm goes off, reflect on what you have done the past hour. Ask yourself, “Have I spent the last hour doing something productive?”
- Evening (5 minutes). After you’ve turned off your computer, take a moment to meditate. Take a deep breath, and recap how your day went.
To become a successful entrepreneur, you first need to have the right reasons. Then, you need to practice the right fundamentals to get things running. Lastly, you need to conduct the best habits and practices to become more efficient and productive. When you take these things discussed to heart and follow them religiously, you’ll become successful, your business will thrive, and you can change the world.
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